Join us October 9-12th 2014 for a 4 day retreat at this beautiful estate, set in 300 acres of rolling countryside.
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If this elephant of mind is bound on all sides by the cord of mindfullness,
All fear disappears and complete happiness comes.
All enemies; all the tigers, lions, elephants, bears, serpents (of our emotions);
And all the keepers of hell; the demons and the horrors,
All of these are bound by the mastery of your mind,
And by the taming of that one mind, all are subdued,
Because from the mind are derived all fears and all immeasureable sorrows.
A workshop for practitioners, Naduir Healing Centre, Ireland, September 26-28th 2014.
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Mindfulness is present moment recollection.
Simple knowing by watching over the flock of thoughts, like cow herders so they don’t run off into myriad fields and scatter but rather have a wide view of the whole. Or a gate-keeper discerning who is helpful and who is not, through mindfulness we learn what is helpful and discern what leads to suffering and what leads to freedom of mind.
Releasing and relinquishing old patterns that moment to moment cause distress and bewilderment. Mindfulness teaches us to stand still in the midst of all of the developments and events in our life and it takes courage and comitment to swim against the tide.
This present moment recollection reminds us of our deepest longings for kindness, compassion, generosity, connectedness. Our capacity and genuine possibility to live with peace, live an embodied life. Our capacity for wakefulness and profound insight.
We embody our inherent resilience, well being and possibility for freedom of heart and mind.
We begin to understand – that which we repeatedly dwell upon becomes the shape of our mind.
The feminine principle; an allowing, an acceptance, a flowing, a ‘being in’, not planning to be and pushing to get to. A rolling with and adapting to life, surroundings and circumstance.
I have conversations with women in my circle, women that work, women who are mothers, women who are driven and those who are not. We are wondering about the feminine principle in our own ways and beginning to articulate what it means to be women, to be successful, on whose terms? To be with rather than push for.
To be the women we are. Honoring our own rhythms, cycles, pacing and goals. Not lining those up with and comparing them to any other, or what the majority may be culturally aspiring to, but playing our own flute and speaking our own language; carving our own shape and expression.
I have many clients that are exhausted, both male and female, tired with the constancy of the pace of their lives. The relentless grinding, these are successful and capable people, yet something is not being fed, the foot is always on the accelerator and they are wondering; is this their inner drive or is it coming from the outside, where is the pressure coming from?
They are asking questions of their own lives and values, because the way it is, is not satisfying and not sustainable. I suggest it’s a pull between the outside and inside, what we know to be us on the inside v’s the world and it’s demands from us externally. To have lost an inside-out type of engagement with the world and instead be outside-in influenced and pressured; dictated to, rather than creating from.
The pace of life is fast there is little time to contemplate or ponder these questions, these stirrings, these knowing’s inside, just a move from one task to another to keep afloat is not enough.
Keep questioning, keep talking and keep moving from the inside-out. Slow down and allow time for stillness. Keep returning to what you instinctively know. Keep listening deeply.
Silence, stillness, glistening water, nature, sun, no internet, no phone, no media, no intrusion from the outside, a stack of books, a pad and pen, some classical music, the moon, uninterrupted landscape. The RETREAT is necessary to our sanity.
To truly hear another is the art of bringing embodied awareness, compassionate relationship and supportive presence into our listening.
This way of being enables us to purely receive, this receiving is accompanied by greater clarity, understanding and empathy.
Embodied contemplative practices in the form of compassion, loving kindness and equanimity combined with a spacious, meditative approach allows for an attuned receptivity.
Attuning in this way, we are opening our capacity to experience another as they actually are; rather than distorting phenomena and the other through the lens of our subjective perception.
We are openening to what is, meeting what is.
Some wonderful books that were dipped into by participants in the library of our JOURNEY INTO STILLNESS weekend at a stunning private home in somerset this past weekend.
‘What The Buddha Taught’, the 4 noble truths, there is suffering and the causes, there is the cessation of suffering, there is the path to the cessation of suffering (mindfulness) and there is liberation from suffering.
‘Essential Rumi’, a deeply sublime and wise poet.
‘Awakening Shakti’, the life-force, the prana, the inherent within all ~ Sally’s book is a soft, feminine and intelligent book packed with meditations and wisdom.
‘The Words of My Perfect Teacher’, a spiritual classic.
‘At the core of our being is a deep well of stillness, from which our life force ignites into existence and will ultimately return to rest. Become your Stillness within, allow your Being to emerge.’
Vanessa Hodge and Jane Shaw JOURNEY INTO STILNESS 2014 – looking forward to seeing you all at retreat on Thursday afternoon.
In mindfulness based psychotherapy these inherent states of wellbeing are modelled in the embodiment of interconnection; belonging, attunement, acceptance and generosity.
In buddhism these states are the four sublime states, the brahmavihara, the divine abodes; LOVE (metta) COMPASSION (karuna) SYMPATHETIC JOY (mudita) EQUANIMITY (upekkha)